UNC: Bacot returning to Tar Heels for junior season

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CHAPEL HILL, NORTH CAROLINA – JANUARY 20: Armando Bacot #5 of the North Carolina Tar Heels dunks against the Wake Forest Demon Deacons during the second half of their game at the Dean Smith Center on January 20, 2021 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. North Carolina won 80-73. (Photo by Grant Halverson/Getty Images)

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CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina big man Armando Bacot is returning for his junior season after making himself eligible for the NBA draft.

The school announced the 6-foot-10 Bacot’s decision Monday.

Bacot led UNC with 12.3 points and 7.8 rebounds per game as a sophomore while part of a deep frontcourt. He also shot a team-high 62.8% last season, and has averaged 10.9 points and 8.0 rebounds over two seasons.

He’s set for major minutes in the debut season of new Tar Heels coach Hubert Davis after the departures of fellow bigs Day’Ron Sharpe (NBA draft), Garrison Brooks (transferred to Mississippi State) and Walker Kessler (transferred to Auburn).

“As much as I am pleased that he was able to go through the (draft) process and flourish in that process, I am just as ecstatic that he is coming back to Carolina,” Davis said in a statement, adding: “For us to have a chance next year, we need to have someone like Armando.”

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